After Work at the SNWR

Black Crowned Night Heron. ©2016 Copyright Mary K. Hanson. All Rights Reserved.
Black Crowned Night Heron. ©2016 Copyright Mary K. Hanson. All Rights Reserved.

After work, I ran out to the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge.  I usually go out there very early in the morning, and I was interested in seeing if there were any “new” critters I could see in the late afternoon.  As I drove from Woodland up to Willows, I got caught by one of the monster rainstorms that was rolling through.  It didn’t just rain or pour, it was like driving through a WATERFALL, solid water.  Some folks pulled off to the side of the highway because they couldn’t see.  The noise was incredible, too.  I bet there was a tornado just waiting to be born in that cloud.  Luckily, though, by the time I got to the refuge, I’d driven past the storm, and it was cloudy and windy, but not wet there.

I actually saw LESS creatures in the afternoon than I normally do in the early morning, so I won’t need to do this experiment again.  I did, however, get some shots of a Black-Crowned Night Heron that was wading through a shallow pond.  I stopped to get its picture, and was having a little difficulty focusing through the tules.  While I was doing that, a guy is a truck pulled up beside me and started talking to me… Uh, I’m TRYING to get a photo.  His truck was so loud and he was making so much noise with his chatter I feared the bird would fly off and I’d never get a decent shot.  I gave him perfunctory monosyllabic responses to the guy’s remarks until he finally figured out that I wasn’t interested in conversation and drove off.  Luckily the heron was still hanging around, so I DID get the photos I wanted.

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By then the storm had circled around and was coming back again, so I left the refuge and headed back to Sacramento.